I witnessed something tonight that bothers me to absolutely no end. I watched as young, left-leaning journalists piled on Bob Woodward after he was told by the White House he’d regret his words from earlier today:
Can you imagine Ronald Reagan sitting there and saying ‘Oh, by the way, I can’t do this because of some budget document?’ Or George W. Bush saying, ‘You know, I’m not going to invade Iraq because I can’t get the aircraft carriers I need’ or even Bill Clinton saying, ‘You know, I’m not going to attack Saddam Hussein’s intelligence headquarters,’ as he did when Clinton was president because of some budget document? Under the Constitution, the president is commander-in-chief and employs the force. And so we now have the president going out because of this piece of paper and this agreement, I can’t do what I need to do to protect the country. That’s a kind of madness that I haven’t seen in a long time.
News broke pretty quickly during an interview with CNN that Woodward said he’d received a message from a White House staffer.
I am a journalist. I admit this freely. Yes, I’m opinionated, but when I write stories or present them in audio format, I try my hardest to make sure they are as balanced as possible. I admire the work of Woodward, Murrow, and other historical figures who made the profession what it is today, for better or worse. And then I see this Tweet, and I go into a tailspin of rage for reasons I can’t fully comprehend.
That was posted by the editor and publisher of The Nation. And I felt this terrible sadness and rage. Don’t admit that, Katrina. Lie. Make us feel like you have up and coming intellect in your organization.
Several young journalists, regardless of whether the White House staffer meant to threaten Woodward, have taken to doing just that. This is tragic to me.